Should Carpet Be Replaced After Water Damage?

What do you do with water-damaged carpets? Can it be saved? Should you just replace it? Find out more.

If you’ve experienced water damage before, one thing you should know is the challenge of remediation that follows.

Carpet Water Damage Restoration

Water damage may arise from leaks, water flow, roofs, water heaters,   sewer water backup, and groundwater damage. One of the first areas to be affected is the floor.

If you have a carpet, it may be damaged beyond repair.

So, the question asked is; should carpet be replaced after water damage? This isn’t a yes or no answer as there are variables that may come into play.

In other words, the carpet’s condition and type of water damage will determine whether or not it should be replaced.

A Little on Mold Growth

Water damage is usually occasioned by mold growth on carpets. This determines whether or not a carpet can be restored or needs to be replaced.

The most common types of indoor molds are Alternaria, Stachybotrys, Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Cladosporium.

These cause all sorts of respiratory health issues with common symptoms like excessive thirst accompanied by increased urination, as well as a metallic taste in the mouth.

Other symptoms include memory problems, muscle cramping & pain in joints, weakness & fatigue, as well as numbing & tingling feeling.

You may also experience asthmatic issues, vertigo & tremors, as well as light sensitivity & other eye issues. You don’t want to have mold growing on your carpets as a result of water damage.

So, at what point can a carpet be restored or replaced? Read on to find details on these and more.

Can Wet Carpet Be Saved: Three Major Considerations?

If a carpet gets wet should it be replaced?

In determining whether or not to have your water-soaked carpet replaced, you’ll need to find out three things; the length of water exposure, the water source, as well as the amount of water in the carpet.

These three factors are being considered to enable you to take the needed action.

With this said, it’s important to discuss each of these points in more detail. This allows the reader to have an exact idea of what needs to be done to fix the water damage issue.

  • The Length of Water Exposure

Length of water exposure is crucial to determining whether or not to replace a carpet.

This is mostly due to the time taken for mold growth to begin. Normally, water-soaked carpets are safe to clean or restore when the problem is less than a day (24 hours) long.

On the other hand, carpets are considered damaged beyond restoration when water damage has lasted beyond the 24-hour mark. This is because mold growth is likely to have started.

It’s difficult to return the carpet to its original state when mold growth sets in.

Most mold remediation services will advise you to replace the carpets because not all mold spores can be removed. Plus, the health risks associated with mold growth are quite significant.

Molds can be classified into three categories, toxigenic molds, allergenic molds, and pathogenic molds.

Of these three, those under the toxigenic category tend to pose the most serious health effects. These get into the body system through floating spores which are present on affected carpets.

To avoid this problem, you’ll need to dispose of or replace affected carpets that have stayed wet exceeding 24 hours.

  • The Water Source

The water source should be one of the primary considerations that guide your actions.

Here, the focus is on the contaminant levels contained within such water. Two major water sources we’ll need to look at are rainwater, as well as water from broken pipes or toilets.

In terms of their contamination potentials, rainwater tends to be the safer of the two. In other words, contaminants are present in toilet water and those from broken sewer pipes.

So, it becomes necessary to address the problem as best you can.

The logical action to take here is to simply dispose or replace the carpet damaged by toilet water due to the presence of potentially harmful contaminants. For carpets soaked by rainwater, these can be restored.

However as stated earlier, such restoration needs to be within the first 24 hours of getting wet.

Cleaning won’t do much to help when the water source is considered to contain harmful contaminants. These contaminants will remain in the carpet and could cause a wide range of health issues.

This isn’t a situation you want to deal with.

  • Amount of Water in Carpet

The volume of water contained in the carpet is also a major consideration. Carpets could soak in varying water amounts. The more the water-soaked by a carpet the harder it gets to clean.

When a carpet is completely soaked and stays beyond 24 hours in this condition, it’s best to have it disposed of.

You may want to contact your Insurance Agent

Immediately water damage is observed, the first person to call is your insurance agent.

This is especially true for homeowners who have purchased a separate flood insurance plan which is different from a homeowner’s insurance policy.

The feedback from your insurance agent determines whether you’re eligible for comprehensive coverage for your type of water damage.

If you are, your insurance company either covers the cost for restoration or complete carpet replacement. Either way, you have nothing to lose but everything to gain.

Who Cleans A Water Damaged Carpet?

When damage to the carpet is observed, the first action that often follows seeks to determine whether the situation can be salvaged. If the carpet is still within the possibility of restoration, then you’ll have to call in the professionals to get the job done.

DIY carpet restoration or cleaning isn’t a good idea especially when there’s water damage. Going ahead with DIY cleaning might result in moisture retention which in turn worsens the condition of the carpet.

You may end up losing your carpet to mold growth when you insist on cleaning it yourself.

Carpet cleaning services have the right tools to extract the dirt as well as moisture contained within your carpet. You might want to go with such professional service to benefit from their thoroughness.

Carpets are only replaced after water damage when conditions do not support cleaning or restoration. These have been discussed above. You can only get desired outcomes when you have competent hands perform the job for you.

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